Sunday, October 26, 2008


AKA: Eschscholtzia californica, golden poppy.

Though its alkaloids are nowhere near as powerful, the California poppy is related to the opium poppy. Despite this, it is perfectly legal to grow and, in fact, is the state flower of California.

Effects: May relieve insomnia and anxiety. It may also be used to treat nervous tension and muscle tics. The alkaloids are different from those of the opium poppy and, though they have not been thoroughly studied, are not known to be narcotic or addictive.

Works synergistically with such sedative herbs as valerian.

Precautions: Overdose symptoms include headaches, hangover-like effects the next day, and other minor side effects. As with poppy seeds, use can cause a urine test to read positive for opiates.

It should not be combined with alcohol, prescription sedatives, or other depressants.
Dosage: The usual dose is 30 drops of tincture, or a spoonful of whole dried herb in a cup of tea 2 to 3 times a day.